Incredible 11 minutes give Metros playoff edge
September 26, 2001

MetroStars Los Angeles
Faria 2
09.26.01 · Playoff

The MetroStars scored four goals in 11 minutes -- more that they scored in any game all year -- to destroy the LA Galaxy, 4:1, and take a four-points-to-one lead in the best-of-three MLS Cup quarterfinal. The series will be decided on Saturday in LA, where the Metros will need a tie to advance. Even if they lose, the series will go to a sudden death overtime and then penalty kicks.

Los Angeles struck very early, with Sasha Victorine receiving the ball inside the Metro box and one-timing into the net in the fourth minute. The rest of the first half saw LA having most of the run of play, as the Metros could not create any good chances.

The second half started with a freak play as the Metros seemed to have caught the Galaxy off guard, Ross Paule chipping the ball from the opening kickoff into the LA net. For whatever reason, the goal didn't count.

The tide of the game changed when Greg Vanney got a well-deserved second yellow card early in the second half for bringing down Faria close to the Galaxy net. But for a while, the game looked very much like the Columbus and Chicago games a few weeks ago, when the Metros had a one-man advantage for close to a half but were not able to score. Then, Steve Jolley hit the woodwork. Then, the floodgates opened.

In the 72nd minute, Rodrigo Faria received a pass from Adolfo Valencia and put it past Kevin Hartman to tie up the game. Three minutes later, Mark Chung deflected a Daniel Hernandez free kick to give the Metros the lead as the ESC erupted behind Hartman's goal.

In the 80th minute, Faria got his second, his 11th of the year, off a Petter Villegas feed. Valencia then finished the scoring in the 83rd, stripping Danny Califf of the ball, and going around Hartman.

If only the Metros could play that well for the full 90...

Lineup: Howard, Perez, Jolley, Petke, Williams, Hernandez, Chung, Villegas, Paule, Valencia, Faria. Subs: Alvarez, Walsh.

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